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A Walk on the Wild Side

Will Self and Robert Macfarlane Walk Wild Britain
We met on the sea wall beneath the lowering weirdness of Bawdsey Manor and bonded over the bizarre extent of its rock garden: how had it come to be there? Xenoliths – Robert said – that was the technical term for rocks brought from another place. He was indeed handsome, fit and disarmingly charming; and as we loped on along the shingle crunching and chatting it became abundantly clear that our problem that day was not going to be an awkward silence. There are two main types of walk so far as I’m concerned – and I expect Robert would agree: the determining factor is not a walk’s length, whether up hill or down dale, if it is sleeting or shining, but only accompanied/unaccompanied.
[more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns on Jul 29, 2014 - 11 comments

The novel is dead!

The literary novel as an art work and a narrative art form central to our culture is indeed dying before our eyes. Will Self on the future of the novel.
posted by dng on May 2, 2014 - 56 comments

Up the Clapham Junction

How a pop song described a certain place in a certain time, and how parts of the area were transformed from an industrial slum into a nightlife epicentre. Here's the radio version.

† 4 May 1979 - The Conservative Party wins the general election and Margaret Thatcher becomes the first female Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. Two weeks later Squeeze releases their single Up the Junction.
posted by sidra on Apr 13, 2014 - 18 comments

We are wallowing in an atemporal zone of cultural production

Habitually verbose pontificator Will Self reviews the latest tome from Mark Kermode - Britain's Rockabilly Ebert - and in doing so, reviews the changing nature of criticism.
posted by mippy on Oct 9, 2013 - 11 comments

Powerless over the Net

Many writers are using software to fight what they call Internet Addiction that is interfering with their work. Zadie Smith thanked the programs, Freedom and Self Control, in the acknowledgements of her new novel,NW, which has a character who is addicted to online message boards. Other writers, including Booker short lister Will Self, prefer to use typewriters instead of being tempted by the Web's lures. Scientists have recently linked internet addiction with a nicotine addiction gene, although there is no consensus on whether it is addiction or habituation.
posted by Isadorady on Sep 7, 2012 - 84 comments

Memories that aren't mine, yet they seem so tangible. Everywhere there's a sense of loss...

"I'd like my work to be found in a skip, in Southgate or somewhere, in forty years' time". Nick Papadimitriou walks and looks and writes and thinks, as he ventures around London and its fringes. He eschews the term 'psychogeography', preferring the notion of 'deep topography' to describe what he does. The London Perambulator, a short documentary about his work, was released in 2009 and features Will Self, Iain Sinclair, and Russell Brand talking about his impact on their work. His first book, Scarp, will be released by Sceptre this summer.
posted by hydatius on May 1, 2012 - 7 comments

Mean streets

Will Self: Walking is political A century ago, 90% of Londoners' journeys under six miles were made on foot. Now we are alienated from the physical reality of our cities. Will Self on the importance of walking in the fight against corporate control
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Mar 30, 2012 - 55 comments

"But still, polycythaemia vera – what was that? A disease that sounded like a Greek goddess spliced with an East End pub-landlady..."

Will Self: The trouble with my blood. [The Guardian] Diagnosed with a rare blood disease, author Will Self has to endure weekly 'venesections' in hospital. He reflects on illness, addiction and mortality. [Will Self - Previously].
posted by Fizz on Oct 21, 2011 - 28 comments

Self Referential

"People have always had an ulterior or imaginative life," opines writer Will Self. "There's something about the act of will involved in believing in preposterous things that I believe is the very kind of muscle and key of having an imagination... here, you have an arena that is inherently psychotic." In a series of interviews about the nature of human imagination and violence as they are transformed by the Internet, Self muses on how primal human desires are being satisfied more efficiently and easily by the increasingly connected life, and wonders how this will change us as much as society.
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Jun 16, 2011 - 10 comments

Will Self reviews fast food

"Real Meals": Will Self's (relatively) new fortnightly restaurant column reviewing high street food outlets for The New Statesman. Thus far: McDonald's, KFC, Indian Restaurant, Starbucks, Subway.
posted by hydatius on Nov 27, 2009 - 72 comments

Will Self's writing room in excessive detail.

A 360 degree view in 71 photos of Will Self's writing room. Damn, that's a lot of post-its. (related)
posted by Ufez Jones on Apr 30, 2007 - 28 comments

Inside the Writer's Room

Writers' Rooms The Guardian takes you inside the spaces where writers such as JG Ballard and Will Self attempt to cajole words into doing their bidding.
posted by drezdn on Apr 12, 2007 - 22 comments

The greatest thinker of our time?

The greatest thinker of our time? Will Self thinks so in this interview with Philosopher John Gray. Not everyone agrees, which suggests a question. Who are the really great thinkers of our time? Suggestions ....?.
posted by grahamwell on Sep 3, 2002 - 47 comments

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